Even though kaizen events have proven to be quite successful, many organizations are hesitant to use this approach because team members have to spend three or five days away from their jobs. Quite often, the companies which fail to utilize the power of kaizen team usually opt for other projects which lead to unsuccessful improvements. These same organizations always claim that lean principles did not deliver the expected results.
Kaizen is a Japanese philosophy for continuous improvement and it’s used traditionally in the manufacturing industry. The kaizen event is a very intensive activity which typically target rapid results and is focused on business process improvement.
Why You Should Harness The Power Of Kaizen Team
Kaizen teams are usually formed in kaizen-oriented companies or organizations for two major reasons. For one, this team can develop Kaizen practitioners for future projects. The second reason is that they have the skills to implement and execute successful Kaizen projects.
A kaizen event or blitz is a quick and straightforward approach that is led by lean experts. Even though this approach guarantees substantial results in a short time period, it’s not recommended for every kaizen team. On the other hand, kaizen team members are extremely valuable in lean environments because effective systems and people are regarded as a foundation which needs regular improvement.
In lean organizations, all team members strive to develop their skills and engage in other learning activities on a continuous basis. These teams often try to learn new subject areas from training entities and experts. However, the employees and team members in traditional companies or organizations are usually more reluctant to attend trainings which are pushed and imposed on them.
Basically, the only way to benefit from Kaizen projects and maintain them on the factory floor is with the help of a kaizen team. So, your ultimate goal should be to develop team members who are competent to carry out their own Kaizen projects in the future and subsequently train others. During the selection process, you should only choose those who can demonstrate that they are multi-disciplined and show interest in continuous learning.
In addition, you need to hire a lean expert who can objectively create Kaizen teams who fully understands lean concepts, tools and terms. The team members must also have the skills to implement and establish a lean system. Ultimately, these team members should be able to develop and carry out kaizen project(s) successfully. During this period, the Kaizen expert would monitor the team members to access result-orientation, accuracy, understanding and methodology.
Even though kaizen events are used traditionally in manufacturing companies, they have become extremely popular in various other industries. Therefore, you should really get a kaizen team if you are thinking of using kaizen events for overall business improvement.